Lake Avenue Cemetery

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Historic Preservation Commission Logo Lake Avenue Cemetery


Lake Avenue Cemetery
Lake Avenue
Consecrated 1840

The Lake Avenue Cemetery (originally known simply as the "Crystal Lake Cemetery") is the oldest public burying ground in Crystal Lake. In fact, it is the oldest in Algonquin Township. The cemetery was consecrated in 1840. According to the book, "The History of McHenry County, Illinois," which was first published in 1885, the first person buried there was Ella King, daughter of Isaac and Almina King.

The cemetery eventually became part of the large estate of Charles S. Dole. Mr. Dole traded the cemetery land to the Village of Crystal Lake in exchange for allowing a road to be run down to the lake and his home. The new road, Lake Avenue, flipped the orientation of the cemetery. The front of the cemetery today actually used to be the back!

Since 1840, nearly 1,200 people have been buried in this two-acre plot of land. Many of Crystal Lake's earliest settlers are buried there.

The Lake Avenue Cemetery is owned and maintained by Algonquin Township. In 2000, the Lake Avenue Cemetery received the City of Crystal Lake's Landmark Designation.

Since 2003, the Historic Preservation Commission has routinely contributed funds to restore the vandalized and weathered tombstones of some of Crystal Lake's founding families. To learn more about Crystal Lake's cemeteries and who is in them, the Crystal Lake Historical Society conducts an annual cemetery walk in September.